Behind my Latest Collection
Years ago, at one of the gem shows I attended, I had purchased a few larger stones that intrigued me. They were landscape stones. Stones that provoked my brain neurons to “see” meaningful patterns or images of familiar things in Nature’s design. Just like we would see a face in the moon or reading shapes of the clouds. All of them were too big for a piece of jewelry, but then some memories popped into my head, which in turn, sparked an idea. What if I fixed this gorgeous stone on a wood panel and extended the landscape around it – painting the rest of the scene? And, what if I made the oil paint out of crushed rocks and minerals, like painters of centuries ago? And, what if I made a jewelry collection to go with it?
Subconsciously, my landscape collection most likely took hold as a small seed in my mind decades ago. As a child always interested in detail, I remember coming across certain pieces of artistry or art related venues at various moments of my life that made an impact.
One early recollection of mine was an “art” store located at that time on Elizabeth street (in New York City) – one of my favorite streets to shop – called Kremer’s. This was no ordinary art store, however, it was a small treasury that catered to artists and traditional paint making – full of vibrant powders to tantalize the senses. I recall stopping in my tracks, mesmerized by hundreds of bottles of colored, crushed powders with which to make paint. I was probably about 15 years old and was only doing a bit of painting at the time in high school, but I distinctly remember having “an itch” to own all those multicolored pigments, simply to have them on my shelf.
Next, my mind flash-backed to an installation at the Met Museum, where I saw slices of rocks framed on a wall. Decades later, after I moved to Los Angeles, I again came across stone art on the walls of a pagoda at the Huntington Gardens. These were all ancient Chinese “Dream Stones” – a centuries old art form highlighting intriguing designs of Nature as “paintings.” Once again, I was hypnotized… and inspired.
Three years in the making, the Landscape Collection is finally complete - 88 pieces within four capsules: Sky, Desert, Mountain and Ocean. One by one, these gems were chosen over many months for their particular scenic quality. Each gem landscape is set in a golden frame, like a painting, with a polished rim in a brushed 18k yellow gold. Each gold mounting is part of the uniqueness of the collection; some are hand-pierced mimicking trees, clouds or even birds I see in the actual stone, or some are “frames” for the scene within the stone. Each piece is an ode to the magic and mystery of Nature. I hope that this collection stirs your soul, as much as it makes mine beat. And tune in next month, when I’ll share images of the paintings I created, plus more history of stones as art throughout history.
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